Be like Obama - Never be on time

Words: Clive Burcham

At our Friday all-company meetings I often have a pondering to share. One recent Friday I brought up a thought I had that morning while crossing the Sydney Harbour Bridge at 8.23am, about 45 minutes early for my first meeting:
“Don’t be on time."
That's right - I want my colleagues to no longer be on time.
I want them to be ahead of time. Ahead of their time. 

Life, it is said, is a metaphor for life. If you want to be late, you will be late, not just for meetings or engagements or drinks with family or friends - you will be late to the proverbial party, full stop. 

I'm not alone in advocating this idea. Former POTUS Barack Obama famously extolled the virtues of being early to meetings, press conferences and basketball games while promoting early voting. 

So, when I asked our team, "Why should you not be on time?", one of our very wonderful, smart, ahead-of-their time employees, Ally, piped up: "Because you can be early." Right on!!

Other thoughts from the group were as follows: 
1. To use the time to catch up with colleagues.
2. To use that time to send a message or make a quick call to a friend or partner you've been thinking about.
3. To give yourself time to breathe, relax and prepare yourself mentally.
4. To have time to make idle conversation with strangers near you or walking by - they might become a new friend or even a person you might do business with in future.
5. To make the person you are seeing feel valued - after all, its not respectful to be late. 

So, don’t be on time - just like Obama.

Tom Murray